10am – Breakfast, Centre Place
Centre Place is a hive of activity any day of the week – with vibrant cafes, restaurants and bars, there’s plenty to choose from. I chose coffee and a tasty savory muffin for a mere $5 from Cafe No. 5.
11am – Culture Fix @ NGV, St. Kilda Road
With a selection of tours (free!), classes, and an impressive array of modern and historical art, The National Gallery of Victoria delivers enough diversion for a whole day, but I decided to go for the antiquities. It’s fascinating to view ancient hieroglyphs, relics and jewellery made thousands of years ago.
12.30 Street Art Tour, Various Locations
Melbourne City is full of artworks plastered on walls, many of which are commissioned, some less so! Hosier Lane, Royal Lane, and AC/DC Lane are excellent examples. Hosier Lane is considered the city’s street-art ‘incubator’ – there’s around half a dozen people painting when we visit.
1.30 ACMI, Federation Square
The Australian Centre of the Moving Image is a great place to catch a film, and check out brilliant local and international art displays. There’s a 2.30 film at the centre, Vogue: The Editor’s Eye, so I decide to pick up a quick lunch beforehand.
2pm Crossways, Swanston Street
Crossways has been serving basic vegie lunches for years now. Concession card holders get all-you-can-eat for a mere 5.50. This includes I have it on good authority that ‘Om’ vegetarian restaurant is awesome too.
2.30 ACMI Cinema, Federation Square
I watch a screening of Vogue – the Editor’s Eye. There’s often free film events on at the ACMI – this one is tied to the current Melbourne Spring Fashion Festival. There seems to be more free shows on Fridays, for some reason. The film gives us an intimate look into the running of one of the world’s most iconic publications – a great bookend to the popular documentary The September Issue.
4pm – Magnation, Elizabeth Street
Cafe and mag mecca Magnation is a great place to pass an hour with a mag or two and a cappuccino. I especially love the upstairs level – it is packed with cheap back-issues of magazines. Great if you’re doing an art project.
530pm – Lala Land, Hardware Lane
Lala Land is known for their generous happy hours – from 5pm – 8pm there are specials on a range of wine, beer and basic spirits. Inside there’s a selection of comfy couches and a comfortable indoor/outdoor heated smoking area out back just perfect for post-work drinks.
8pm – Shanghai Street Dumpling, Bourke Street
We decide to finish up at Shanghai Street Dumpling. There’s usually a queue to get into this place, and for good reason! On reciving your unassuming-looking plate of tasty goodness, delectable parcels of flavour near explode on your palate. Yum – a great end to a big day in the grid!